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Soldiers bringing back weapons

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by jmr40, Feb 22, 2013.

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  1. ccsniper

    ccsniper member

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    A friend of mine recently got back from Afghanistan, he brought a BUNCH of Henry-Martini rifles with him. Bought em for something like 3 bucks a piece over there, said it was difficult but he got them here legally.
     
  2. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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    Fuel tanks were/are pretty common too.


    I remember a guy (a marine IIRC) got caught a couple years ago doing that.
     
  3. bainter1212

    bainter1212 Member

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    My grandfather is a Korean war vet (he'll be 84 this year, 24th inf. Div.) He shipped home an M2 carbine while he was there. He also picked up a Mosin Nagant sniper rifle (with scope) off of a dead Chinese soldier. He disassembled it and put it in his bag. On the ship, they told everyone that if they had contraband they would be in big trouble, so he threw it overboard into San Francisco bay. Turns out nobody even got checked :( He sold that M2 carbine many years ago......
     
  4. Rock185

    Rock185 Member

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    I left Viet Nam in early 1970. As we were leving, we were constantly warned about all of the dire things that would happen to us if we tried to smuggle home weapons of any kind. I believe the threat that had the most impact on us was that we would not be leaving Viet Nam if we were caught with any prohibited item. We were not even allowed to bring back those little miniture cross bows the Montagnards made. BTW, I served as a TC/Tank Commander in the Central Highlands. The men in one Montagnard villiage in our area of operation were issued Thopmpson submachineguns that looked like new. Strange to see near stone age men in loin cloths carrying around those nice Thompsons. I don't recall how much checking was actually done, but I'm not aware of anybody on the plane I left on bringing back any contraband. I sure didn't try to bring anything back, I just wanted to be out of there.

    Ps, vito, I agree, RVN was so long ago, it does seem like another life. We were young once, and soldiers....
     
  5. leadcounsel

    leadcounsel member

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    I don't know when the last time it would have been legal, or ignored, but in current conflicts it is a crime.

    I served as a JAG in Iraq on several deployments.

    Absolutely NO firearms or parts (meaning mags, receivers, etc.) could be legally brought home by individual Soldiers. Only exception was 'antique' pre-1898 guns in Afghanistan, and that required some paperwork.

    I'm aware of several cases where Soldiers were severly punished for breaking this law trying to smuggle guns back in hidden compartments, false bottoms of boxes, even in computer equipment such as printers, scanners, etc that were hollowed out. Not worth it for a gun you can buy for $500 in the States.

    Corps, Divisions, Brigades and Battalions were allowed some field guns, and small arms. They required massive amounts of paperwork and were demilled (welded shut, receiver cut, etc.). I've helped get this accomplished, and it's a real PITA, and sad to see these nice guns destroyed for a display.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  6. Bang!

    Bang! Member

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    x2 on leadcounsel. That's the way I remember it too. Some of you may want to delete a post???
     
  7. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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    Any legal firearm can be sent home via form 6 pt II

    www.atf.gov/forms/download/atf-f-5330-3b.pdf
     
  8. Ingsoc75

    Ingsoc75 Member

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    I always like this one. I'm sure it never got registered in the 68 amnesty.

    bh_ak47_03.jpg
     
  9. leadcounsel

    leadcounsel member

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    Sam said:
    Sam - you're giving ILLEGAL advice. And you're wrong.

    General Order 1 stated, in summary, mere POSSESSION of war souveniers or privately acquired guns, ammuntion, gun parts, weapons, military gear, etc. was illegal. (Minor exceptions for some TA50 gear such as helmets, pouches, insignia, etc.). If you were caught with an AK47 or pistol, without authorization, your goose was cooked.

    Yes, I am aware of Soldiers holding on to these for mission specific purposes, backup guns for Spec Ops, etc. But that's not what we are discussing here. God save you if you're trying to send a gun home from theater. Nearly everything sent home was supposed to be inspected by Navy Customs, postal service, etc. It was all carefully searched, X-rayed, etc. Having gone through Navy Customs many many times, I can tell you that it was VERY thorough. You were stripped of all of your possessions except the clothes you were wearing. Everything you sent back in your ISU container was searched thoroughly by inspectors while you stood there and they dumped everything out and searched every nook and cranny for contraband. Then it was all packed up and locked and shipped. All of your 'luggage' was then sent through metal detectors and Xrays. Then you went through a metal detector (and on one of my trips, I went through an Xray back spatter machine). After all of that, you dumped all of your gear out in front of a Navy Customs inspector and they literally went through everything, item by item. (Funny story, a female NCO had to rummage through my VERY dirty laundry including socks and underware... poor woman...). I am also aware of cases where folks smuggled guns home and were later caught. They are now called "Inmate."

    GO1 is punishable by law, and violating it subjects a military person to up to 2 years in prison and a Dishonorable Discharge under Article 92 of the UCMJ.

    http://usmilitary.about.com/od/punitivearticles/a/mcm92_2.htm

    Here is a copy of GO1, from 2006. This, or a version of it, was in effect in Iraq beginning with the invasion as far as I know.

    http://www.militaryatheists.org/regs/JPGO1B-4.pdf

    I do this for a living brother... and have plenty of experience both as a prosecutor (for the 101st Airborne Division and 5th Special Forces Group) and as a Defense lawyer (for I Corp) for many years.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  10. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

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    Only in CENTCOM AOR.

    Notice I said *legal* firearm.
     
  11. vito

    vito Member

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    Welcome home to all of you who have served our country. I think you are right about it getting harder to send stuff home as the war goes on. I heard of fellow Vietnam vets who were there early, like '63 or '64 coming back with various items unchecked by customs at all. I know of one officer who was an advisor who entered, with RVN troops, a burned out village. It appeared everyone was dead but he found a living infant essentially uninjured. He had a Vietnamese woman take care of the baby and brought it home on the plane with him. I don't know if he ever went through formal adoption but the child was raised in the US. Customs checks were apparently very unpredictable back during the Vietnam war. I have heard of others like me who sailed through without opening their bags, and others who were patted down as well as having their luggage searched. Maybe it matters where you entered the U.S. I came through McCord AFB in Washington if I recall, or maybe it was actually SEATAC Airport (too long ago to trust fuzzy memories). I still wish I had brought back that Colt 38 Special!
     
  12. dvdcnl

    dvdcnl Member

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    Vietnam Tokarev bring home

    My unit, A troop 7/1 Air Cav found a cache of stuff in the delta summer 68. in it was a case of 50 new toks in cosmoline. I went through the hoops and got mine registered and export papers at the mp station in can tho; good thing as several times i was told i couldn't take it with me and I had to show the papers; at bien hoa, in line at the airplane and at oakland. all weapons on the plane were locked in a locker and given to us at deplaneing. several years ago I donated it to the Warbirds museum in Cocoa Florida. without papers, it would have been hard to bring one back. at bien hoa, one guy came in with a tok and didn't have papers, he wasn't allowed to go to the mp station and sold it to a sergeant for $35.
     
  13. Thermactor

    Thermactor member

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    I heard a story once about a guy bringing back an M16 from Vietnam. Although it's hard to believe it, because.. I'm sure that US soldiers were never able to take government property issued weapons home, and the whole NFA thing makes things even more complicated.
     
  14. Deltaboy1984

    Deltaboy1984 Member

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    After WW2 uncle Sam cracked down on war trophies. But I have seen several Nam ones over the years.
     
  15. Boomerang

    Boomerang Member

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    I'm sorry that your dad died two weeks ago.
    My father was in the Pacific in WWII. He died on Easter morning this year. He was 89.
     
  16. Walter

    Walter Member

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    First off, all you RVN vets, "Welcome Home, Brothers"! As far as bring home captured weapons, my experience was this: We were grunt Marines. We didn't have the room or the muscle to drag around a "Souvenir" in the bush, so the weapon had to be tagged, shipped back to either company or battalion asap.

    Then more paperwork would be done and the weapon and paperwork would be shipped to division, where it would wait until the "owner" showed up to collect it WHEN he had orders to rotate home. The problem was, as I understood it, that when the "owner" got to division, there was no weapon and no record of it.

    I never captured a weapon so I don't know firsthand, but it seemed to be common knowledge among those who did that the paper-pushers at division frequently altered the paperwork to make the captured weapon theirs, so they had a real war souvenir to show the folks back home.

    And they wondered why we called them REMFs. :rolleyes:

    Walter
     
  17. mac66

    mac66 Member

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    I had an uncle send home and bring home several German pistols and rifles from WWII. One was a very nice custom sporter he liberated from the executive offices of the Mauser factory. Another uncle brought home a Arisaka rifle from the when he served in the pacific theater.

    My cousin has a Chinese SKS he brought home from Vietnam and had a Tokorov pistol as well. Not sure if he still has it.
     
  18. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    I bought a "weathered" Russian made Makarov, dated 1976, a few years back. Very little finish, evenly patina'd, and no import markings. Where do YOU think it came from? I'm thinking it was one of those contraband guns sneaked into the US in Hummer battery storage compartments, etc, when some Army unit came back from Afghanistan. It is now in the hands of a friend who shall remain nameless. :D
     
  19. backbencher

    backbencher Member

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    CENTCOM allows soldiers to ship home antiques (pre-1899) via US mail. You can't take it home through Navy Customs, but you're allowed to mail it.
     
  20. tnxdshooter

    tnxdshooter Member

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    No offense but without provenance how do you really know they are bring backs? The proof is all in the papers. No papers no proof.

    Sent from my mind using ninja telepathy.
     
  21. Swing

    Swing Member

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    Cool. Were these originals or Afghan copies?
     
  22. SharpsDressedMan

    SharpsDressedMan member

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    Error in posting. Deleted.
     
  23. Coop45

    Coop45 Member

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    Dang lawyers have even taken all the fun out of war.
     
  24. rondog

    rondog Member

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    My brother Dave's FIL brought back a Drilling and a Luger, I've seen them both, Dave owns them now. The Luger hasn't been fired, it still has the same rounds in it that it was loaded with when the German officer fell. Holster too.

    And when I was little, I went with my dad to see someone he knew about something, probably a hunting trip. And I swear that when we were in that guy's garage, he had either an MG34 or an MG42 laying across the joists in his garage! I was too young to know exactly what it was, but from my Sgt. Rock comic books I knew it was a German MG! I'll never forget staring up at that thing with my mouth hanging open.
     
  25. Trung Si

    Trung Si Member

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    I brought back an SKS in 1969, I also registered it as a War Trophy in Can Tho (Mekong Delta) with the Provost Martial and the Vietnamese QC, had to show my Papers at the Plane and took everything I could off Bolt, etc and carried it in my Hand Bag, the Rifle went with the Baggage, at SF Airport I assembled it again and had to show it and the Papers to the US Customs Inspector who happened to be Chinese and he read me what was on the side of the Receiver, this drew two SF Police Officers and they wanted to buy it in the worst way, I still have it, but I had a heck of a time finding Ammo for it back in 1969.;)
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    Last edited: Jun 10, 2013
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